Appointed: R.S. Pandey, as the new Petroleum Secretary. He replaces M.S. Srinivasan, who retires on July 31. Pandey, a 1972-batch IAS officer from the Nagaland cadre, is the Steel Secretary at present. Pandey will have a 17-month stint as the Secretary, Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas.
Surged: Indirect tax receipts, which grew 11.5 per cent during the April-June period from a year earlier, to Rs 54,341 crore. Receipts from excise duty, levied at the factory gate, were up 2.8 per cent at Rs 25,882 crore in the first three months of the 2008-09 financial year. Customs duty receipts rose 20.9 per cent to Rs 28,459 crore in the June quarter, reflecting robust growth in imports.
Dipped: To a six-year low of 3.8 per cent, Index of Industrial Production (IIP) growth for May, against 10.6 per cent in the same month last year. Industrial production growth for April 2008 was also revised downwards to 6.2 per cent, from 7 per cent earlier. Manufacturing, which accounts for about 80 per cent of industrial production, gained 3.9 per cent in May.
Hiked: By 5 per cent, dearness allowance (DA) for over 16 lakh employees in 247 public sector units, to help them tide over the impact of rising prices. The PSU employees will get industrial dearness allowance (IDA) at 84.4 per cent of basic pay with effect from July 1.
Announced: By the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), that annexures and certificates relating to tax deducted at source like Form-16 are not required to be submitted along with income tax returns.
Announced: By former US President Bill Clinton, an agreement with six companies, including four Indian drug companies— Cipla, Calyx Chemicals, Ipca Laboratories and Mangalam Drugs—to lower by 30 per cent the price of a leading artemisininbased combination therapy (ACT) for malaria. This reduces by 70 per cent the price volatality of artemisinin. Up to 500 million people around the globe need malaria treatment each year.